173 thoughts on “April 17, 2012: Pinch Me”

      1. Oh, I'm planning something special for this weekend. It's a surprise!
        /Calls sitters
        I mean the weekend after this one.
        /Figures out something special for fellow citizenry

      1. That would have helped with yesterday's game result making sense, too.

        I meant to check the archives when April hit because I knew it would be soon. I obviously should have looked the second I thought of it.

  1. Looks like a guy I work for/with in Omaha is snagging us tix to next Monday night's Storm Chasers/Sounds ballgame. Looking forward to some good ol' Triple-A action.

    1. Hopefully they improved the uniforms from last year. The two-tone, lightning-style numbering did not look good.

  2. Anyone here ever play the game Diplomacy? Not that I want to start another game, just curious if others have played it.

    1. I have an unopened box in my house that I have been waiting for about 12 years to play. Unfortunately, I have never been able to find both the time and the other players.

      1. I think it works much better as a correspondence game played over several weeks. That's what I'm doing right now, but we're playing one of the variant maps (Aberration). I find it a delightful yet mindwracking mix of Risk, Chess, and Survivor.

    2. I raised this game as a possibility to Spooky a couple months ago. I haven't played in some 15 years, but I'd be up for it.

    3. While we're asking if others play games... Dominion? Settlers? Carcassone? Thurn & Taxis? Alhambra? Agricola? Other German-style games? (I haven't yet played Puerto Rico or Ticket to Ride... gotta get on that.)

      1. I recommend Puerto Rico, although there is a pretty easy way to win every time...

        We play Settlers pretty often, but it's hard to convince folks here (in Texas) that the game is engaging on an adult level. I'd also recommend playing the pillars of the earth game. I haven't, and won't, read the novel, but the board game was both challenging and fun.

            1. I usually start people on TransEuropa/TransAmerica, since those are the simplest games. Carcassone is next, since it's a totally different style, but still pretty easy, and then Settlers after that.

              But Settlers is kind of the granddaddy of all these games, so it's a great starting place too.

      2. I have a friend who has over 200 board games, we've been playing them relatively frequently lately. I really enjoyed Arkham Horror & Pandemic which were both cooperative and hard as hell.

          1. I've heard good things about Pandemic. My uncle (who is really only a year older than me, so we're much closer than uncle/nephew usually goes) is really into games and has that one, but I don't think he's played it yet, despite bringing it to nearly every family event.

            1. I love Pandemic as well. My 9 year old son likes playing it as well. One of these days I need to actually buy it for our family.

        1. I've entered the world of cooperative gaming through Forbidden Island and Castle Panic!, but haven't made the jump to Pandemic yet.

            1. Ah yes, this is another one we played. This was brutally difficult, aided in part by my friends' insistence we had a traitor in the group. We didn't, in either game. I believe we also played Curse of Dracula?

      3. I've enjoyed Settlers, Carcassone, and the full suite of Ticket to Ride games, and thoroughly enjoy them all.

        1. I recently played Ticket to Ride for the first time and also throughly enjoyed it, as did my wife, which is good because she is not a Settlers fan. I also enjoyed the Minneapolis/St.Paul area being "Duluth" and Chicago being in Indiana. Crazy Germans, their map reading skills are as good as an Americans.

          1. My brother is big into board games. He loves Settlers and Axis and Allies. He got Ticket to Ride for Christmas this year. It was quite enjoyable. I've not played those other two.

    4. with this topic, it makes me wonder if there's an interesting game we can all play online (for free, of course). werewolf is fun and all, but it's extremely time consuming. is there something that a good chunk of people from here could all play?

      1. I think Diplomacy could be good for that, though it'd happen over a long time frame. If you mean playing like a single online game together, like getting together to play a game but just doing it online... there are sites that do some of these, but I think it'd be tough to pull off a big happy family game.

          1. That doesn't look right. I found an online version of it once, but it didn't work very well.

            There's a great online version of Dominion, and once upon a time I found a workable version of Carcassone, but people there were kind of jerks.

        1. An alternative would be to use a matching physical version and correspond via some online method. Damn, Google Wave would have worked well here.

        2. Diplomacy could be very good for that. Especially with all the plotting and scheming and back stabbing that goes along with the game. I should start to think of a baseball variant of some sort :-)

      2. I'd gladly offer up CdL as the place so we don't flood the WGOM with it. Between Turbo Survivor and (soon) the Puzzle Challenge, it would seem to be booked solid, but Werewolf is becoming an "every now and then" game so I'm sure the games lovers would field suggestions for something new.

        I used to be extremely caught up on board games, but now, not so much. Of all the favorites listed above, if any of them sound playable, link me to some instructions and I'll see if it's viable.

        1. I should add: I'd like it to be as simple to learn as, or simpler than, Werewolf. The recent noobs said they waited so long because they thought it was too complex. It isn't really, but the lengthy instructions can make it look that way.

          If the object can be explained in three lines or fewer, we're on the right track.

          1. That kind of explanation might be tough for most of the games. If I remember Diplomacy correctly though, it's a fairly simple game mechanism, so that might work.

          2. I may have once played a game using standard decks of poker cards that may have been named Mao.
            It may have skewed to the other direction.
            I'm dubious as to whether I can definitively acknowledge as much without penalty, even today, though if I participated, it would have been circa 1995. I may have been in North Carolina that week.

            If I had played, I may have gone from noob, to noob thinking that he had advanced in skill and was in a good position to win (though had this happened it's possible I may not have grasped whether or how one "wins"), to a noob very clearly and decisively losing (again, if such is truly possible in a game that I may be fabricating out of whole cloth) within a single hour.

            There is so little clear in my memory, and dreams may have added or obscured details, to the point where I really cannot say for sure.

          3. There's more extensive rules of Diplomacy online here. However, the basics are this:

            Picture a Risk Board
            Only one unit on a territory
            Certain Territories have things called Supply Centers. You want control of these. Whoever gets control of over half of them on the board wins.
            Everybody moves at the same time
            Units on different territories can work together to displace a unit in another territory, but there's more detailed rules about that in the link above.
            Work with the other players as a team or betray your best friend by telling him you're helping him when you're really helping his worst enemy.
            Hilarity ensues.

            I think there may be an online version of the game somewhere, but I haven't thought to look for it yet.

          1. This comment reminded me that I had never had the Spoonto banner. Then I refreshed and got it. Glorious work, meat!

      3. if you are in the Mankato area, there is a nice little shop in the mall called Double Play that offers up a Game Night every Tuesday. Good people and plenty of games.

        1. I've stopped in there a few times. Haven't ever participated in a game night, but I have lovingly fondled some of the Dominion expansions.

    5. I have played Diplomacy. I also happen to have played Settlers and Puerto Rico (and have interest in other similar games).

  3. The world seems brighter today. It might be the weather, but I'm going to credit the Twins.

    1. My first response to spoilers like this is always "I thought he was Canadian"*

      *Is "Dead or Canadian?" a real thing/joke that other people know about, or have my parents been running a long con on me?

    2. I want him to play the London Olympics too, but my hopes of this happening aren't as high as theirs.

      He's one of their own! Did they really not know about his fairly famous death?

      1. I saw the video yesterday and have to say I was pretty impressed. It cost a fortune, so one had better be. It probably would have cost less to build a resurrection machine and have the actual Tupac there to perform.

      2. I'm loathe to share this because it absolutely ruined one of Elvis Presley's greatest performances, but this was done 2-1/2 years ago....

  4. CC to Free: I was just reading your Ramones review, and found some pretty awesome spam. You may consider closing comments / purging some of the, um, more interesting comments.

      1. Actually it might have been my ode to the movie Rock and Roll High School on a old site I really don't contribute to anymore.

  5. Anyone here know anything about mold remediation? I'm going to look at a house this afternoon that otherwise seems to hit a lot of my high points, but I'm told there's a severe mold problem in the basement... So that might be a deal breaker.

      1. That's what it sounds like... As a housing law attorney I've seen my fair share of mold cases, and it seems like it's something I'd be able to deal with (1. Remove the source of moisture, 2. clean the mold, 3. repair). But the financing part... hmm. I wonder if any bank would go for it.

          1. So... in theory, would a separate home-improvement loan from MN Housing Finance Agency help encourage a bank to finance the purchase?

              1. BTW strat, I mentioned to Sheenie that you wanted the squirrel guy's name. She was working on it.

    1. I had to deal with it in the house we bought. I'll send you my e-mail via FB, so I can respond at length without it going up against my internet meter.

  6. Prediction Contest Update - Things are very tight at the top

    Place Player Points
    1 Daneeka's Ghost 18
    2 Freealonzo 18
    3 Homer Dome 17
    4 MagUidhir 17
    5 The Dread Pirate 16
    6 Buffalo 14
    7 AMR 12
    8 Spookymilk 10
    9 DK 9
    10 davidwatts 8

    For other soccer needs, Bayern Munich is currently hosting Real Madrid in the Champions League semis. The hosts are up 1-0 through Franck Ribery

      1. 2-1 can be a terrible score for the home team the first leg. Real Madrid needs to win 1-0 at home and they're through on away goals, and 1-0 is Mourinho's specialty. But that last goal from Gomez does give them a lot more to work with than 1-1.

            1. Now I want it looped with all the other great Delmon errors/bat throwings that must be out there somewhere.

  7. I had to do a self evaluation at work today. Negative reviews from our senior leadership (motivated by things other than reality) have been the norm around here lately. It's some pretty awful stuff. What do you do in that situation? I went for "thorough."

      1. They don't announce it, and instead just grab you from your office when you least expect it.

    1. I always give myself the most glowing review possible, knowing that management has already determined the size of any salary increase they may give and will evaluate me to fit that metric instead of according to my actual performance. This methodology allows the CFO to eliminate uncertainty from the process, and we all know that uncertainty is the absolute death knell of any business venture. It also eliminates merit and motivation from the process, but management seems less concerned about that.

  8. Today's starting lineup vs. Cap'n Cheezy:

    1. Denard Span, CF
    2. Jamey Carroll, SS
    3. Joe Mauer, DH
    4. Josh Willingham, LF
    5. Ryan Doumit, C
    6. Danny Valencia, 3B
    7. Trevor Plouffe, RF
    8. Luke Hughes, 1B
    9. Alexi Casilla, 2B

  9. I do intake work at a law firm. One method of initial contact is via e-mail. Most of the time, we get a bare-bones synopsis of the potential client's situation and their phone # or e-mail address to set up a consultation. Today, I received an intake e-mail which is worthy of its own LTE. This message contained approximately 1,200 total words (1.5 pages single spaced) with maybe 2 dozen of them capitalized. It had sentences containing 40+ words but no internal punctuation (no parenthesis, commas, hyphens, semicolons, dashes, brackets...nothing) and the whole thing consisted of only 1 paragraph. Despite all this, there were NO misspellings!

      1. Yea, I should probably have put a red letter on it.

        The research is about lady parts and evolution.

            1. Except (not that I would know!) for the site providing detailed information about the lady parts.

        1. Speaking of which, my 1947 Brooklyn Dodgers lost 4-2 in the NLCS to the eventual WS champ Pittsburgh Pirates (the Dodgers led in 3 of their 4 losses). Now that my Diamond Mind League is transitioning to 1948, let me just say "Wait 'til this year!" I've spent about ten seasons gearing my entire team around 1948. Feel free to head on over to Baseball-Reference and consider the prospects of a 1948 team featuring:

          C - Bob Scheffing (working on a possible trade for Campy)
          1b - Stan Musial
          2b - Eddie Stanky
          3b - Ken Keltner
          SS - Johnny Lipon
          LF - Teddy F. Ballgame
          CF - Larry Doby
          RF - Charlie Keller/Pat Seerey platoon

          My boys are going to score a metric ton of runs.

  10. Listening to Beloit. Definitely playing "Twins baseball." In the second inning (of seven-inning game), with runners at 1st and 2nd and no outs trailing by a run, they bunted their No. 6 hitter to bring up a guy batting .091. Resulted in a sac fly. Productive outs!

  11. Did you all see that in a unanimous opinion today, the US Supreme Court announced:

    [I]f a sports-fan friend bemoans that “the New York Mets do not have a chance of winning the World Series,” you will gather that the team has no chance whatsoever (because they have no hitting).

    Best legal parenthetical I've seen in awhile. Of course, my favorite legal footnote is from the Minnesota Supreme Court: State v. Koenig, 666 N.W.2d 366, 368 n.1 (Minn. 2003).

    1. This case is right up Moss' alley. Not because of the Mets, but rather because of pharmaceutical patents and the Hatch-Waxman statutory scheme.

      The Supremes may have gotten one right for a change...

      1. One of Moss's former coworkers* gave a very interesting and thought-provoking presentation about the First Amendment violations committed by the FDA when regulating "off-label" efforts by pharmaceutical companies in one of my classes last fall.

        *At least I think she's a former co-worker. I know she's studying abroad in Europe this semester, and I didn't know if she was returning to work with Moss when she's back in the States.

        1. Um... doesn't the commercial nature of the speech enable reasonable regulations?

          Everything else I want to say is too close to the forbidden topic.

  12. Miguel Sano just hit his league-leading fifth home run, apparently a no-doubter. It was just Beloit's third hit.

  13. I see on twitter that Strib TWolves beat man Jerry Zgoda saying Kevin Love still has concussion symptoms. :(

  14. I know the Knickerbockers are not a well liked team in these parts but, hot darn, Novak can shoot. Also, I take back laughing at Tyson Chandler's contract on the Wolves podcast. That was dumb of me-- for now.

    1. I don't care for Carmelo and I get annoyed by the New York hype machine, but I kinda like a few of the Knicks players. Lin and Amare' get way more media attention than they should, but that's not really their fault.

    2. Let me remind you who made a point to disagree with you about Chandler's bossness at that time.

      Fun Fact: Did you know the Knicks were 28th in the league in opponent's points per game and 22nd in the league in points allowed per 100 possessions last season? This year they are 10th and 4th in those categories.

      1. I still am not nuts about that contract but, like I said, the dude has been awesome this season.

    3. Novak can shoot

      We're talking about pheasant hunting, right?

      /actually, I'm not very good at that either. I've only ever gotten one bird in my life. And it was running on the ground. And by "running" I mean "wounded, and kind of slowly crawling away." And it still took me two shots.

  15. JJ Hardy (3) homered tonight. But, it helped beat the SouthSiders
    Bruce Chen had 7 strikeouts, but the Royals lost to the Tigers again. The Royals have started the season 0-5 at home.

  16. I just got on to check the Twins score from last night, and the Indians and Mariners are still playing. I suppose it is only 10:30 on the Pacific Coast, but still, it's a little freaky.

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